a couple thoughts on self-steering gear…

Being that I keep a weather eye out for used self-steering gear it’s hard to ignore that the current pricing for thirty year old wind vanes are just nuts. The other day I was quoted $2,200. for a 45-year old Aries which appeared to be in horrible shape. But, what the hell, boat folks are all wealthy, stupid, or both.


Ten years ago the going rate for a used Aries in good shape was $500 so what happened?

Way back when, in a design class with Victor Papanek, the subject of the how and why of what made good design was a common thread. Words like sustainable, utility, affordability, art, elegance, and, from time to time (said in hushed tones), profit. I don’t think any of us would see simple tools like wind vane steering selling for the silly prices we’re seeing today.

Which brings me around to thinking about just what sort of wind vane steering system I want to stick on the ass-end of the Islander. Since the Islander is a VolksCruiser and I’m cheap that pretty much cancels out any new gears and leaves a choice between a used vane that works, a used basket case vane that doesn’t, or a DIY vane. I’ll go into the various choices more in the next post.

On another tack, here’s a film I’m really looking forward to seeing and some scary global temperature stuff that makes me all kinds of nervous.

More soon come…

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